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2020 Audi A7 Review

Fully redesigned just last year, the 2020 Audi A7 is a premium midsize car with a twist. As opposed to the more mundane A6 on which it’s based, the A7 wears a striking fastback design, and integrated into that fastback silhouette is a hatchback instead of a conventional trunk.

But there’s more to the A7 than just a different tail. For example, the top A6 trim level has high-definition Matrix-design LED headlights, while the corresponding A7 turns things up even further, offering a trick laser lighting system.

And there’s the design. Everyone has their tastes, but we’re willing to bet that the A7 will gather more fans than detractors. A new design chief at Audi, Marc Lichte, has brought in a new era of sharper-looking cars, and the sleekly handsome A7 appears simultaneously techy and elegant.

It’s also surprisingly practical. Cargo space beneath the power-operated hatchback is a generous 24.9 cu ft. with the rear seats in place. For comparison, the new A6’s trunk volume comes in at just 13.7 cu ft.

One important thing the new A7 and A6 share is a drivetrain that employs a 48-volt mild hybrid system as standard, resulting in a smooth action for the fuel-saving engine stop/start function (which often tends to be intrusive, sending most drivers in search of the "disable" setting). Expect to see a lot more of this feature from Audi and other manufacturers as new models are introduced.

The second-generation S7 makes its debut for the 2020 model year and will be reviewed separately.

What’s New for 2020?

The A7 was all-new just last year, so the 2020 model carries over pretty much unchanged, save for some adjusted packaging structures. See the 2020 Audi A7 models for sale near you

What We Like

  • Attractive, dramatic looks
  • Impressive handling
  • Finely crafted interior
  • Practical hatchback design

What We Don’t

  • New dual-touchscreen infotainment system takes time to master
  • Costs more than A6 but offers less rear seat room

How Much?

$69,995-$100,000

Fuel Economy

The 2020 Audi A7 comes with a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 that generates 335 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque. It’s supplemented by a 48-volt mild hybrid system fed by a lithium-ion battery. This addition powers the stop/start function and enables a fuel-saving "coasting" feature. A 7-speed automatic transmission directs power to all four wheels via standard all-wheel drive.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, fuel consumption is estimated at 22 miles per gallon in the city, 29 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg in combined driving.

Standard Features & Options

The 2020 Audi A7 comes in Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige trim levels.

The Premium ($69,995) has 19-in alloy wheels, LED headlamps/daytime running lights/taillights, a panoramic sunroof, a powered hands-free lift gate, keyless entry/ignition, adaptive rear spoiler, front/rear parking sensors, rain-sensing wipers/headlights, Audi’s Drive Select system (featuring adjustments for steering, throttle and transmission responses), variable-ratio steering, leather seating surfaces, tri-zone automatic climate control (including separate rear controls), heated/8-way power-adjustable front seats with 4-way driver lumbar adjustment and driver’s-side memory settings, a power-adjustable tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, a frameless self-dimming rearview mirror, heated/self-dimming side mirrors, ambient LED cabin lighting, front/rear parking sensors, a universal garage door opener, forward-collision warning, Audi Connect Plus services (including Wi-Fi), Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone integration, a 10-speaker/180-watt audio system, HD/satellite radio, and Audi’s Multi Media Interface (MMI) that includes dual touchscreens (8.8-in and 8.6-in high to low), navigation, voice command function and four USB ports. The Premium trim now comes standard with lane-departure warning, automatic high beams, auto-dimming and power folding sideview mirrors and an alarm system.

An optional Convenience package for the Premium trim includes a heated steering wheel, wireless charging, a phone signal booster and blind spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert and "Exit Assist," which warns of any approaching hazards when the doors are being opened.

The Premium Plus ($74,595) has the contents of the Convenience package as standard and adds Audi’s 12.3-in digital cluster known as "Virtual Cockpit" as standard for 2020 as well. Also included are 10.1-in upper touchscreen, high-definition Matrix-design LED headlights with washers and automatic high beams, a 360-degree camera system, traffic information and a Bang & Olufsen 705-watt/16-speaker audio upgrade.

The Premium Plus is eligible for a Driver Assistance package that includes adaptive cruise control with Traffic Jam Assist (relieving the driver of some effort during stop/go conditions), Turn Assist (which monitors for oncoming traffic when turning across), active lane-keeping assist, intersection assist and road sign recognition. There’s also an Executive Package that nets you four-zone automatic climate control, ventilated front seats, passenger seat lumbar adjustment, heated rear seats, ambient LED lighting and a rear sunshade.

The Prestige ($80,695) now comes standard with the Driver Assistance package and adds heated rear seats for 2020. Also included are a head-up display, HD Matrix-design headlights with laser light, dynamic daytime running lights, powered soft-closing doors, dual-pane acoustic glass, heated/ventilated 12-way power-adjustable front seats, quad-zone climate control and a powered rear window sunshade.

An adaptive damping suspension with rear-wheel steering can be ordered with Prestige trim, as can 21-in alloy wheels, night vision with pedestrian and large animal detection and a 19-speaker/1,820-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system. Also available is an S line package, to which you can add a "Black Optic" exterior appearance package. There’s also an available Luxury package, which includes 18-way power-adjustable/heated/ventilated/massaging front seats covered with Valcona leather upholstery that also covers the dashboard, plus gray birch wood inlays.

Safety

In addition to basic stability control, 4-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes and six standard airbags, the A7 is offered with an array of active safety features, although few come standard. We’ve outlined the specifics in the section above.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has awarded the A7 top marks in all major crashworthiness categories, earning it one of the Institute’s Top Safety Pick+ awards.

Behind the Wheel

Both the A7 and the A6 on which it’s based offer excellent driving dynamics. The standard suspension delivers comfortable ride quality but can reveal its sportier, more controlled side when hustled along twisting roads at an entertaining rate. The engine is suitably energetic while retaining an unflappable refinement, and the transmission fires off quick shifts that are barely perceived. But this is what you get when a car is designed to perform at 150 miles per hour on the Autobahn.

Few automakers do interiors better than Audi. Materials inside the A7 are superb, fit and finish are exemplary and practically every touched surface exudes sophistication. The new dual-screen infotainment system has a learning curve, but we expect just about anyone would get the hang of it after a week or so. The lower screen is able to recognize handwritten inputs, but the system also allows voice commands using natural speech. It even responds to pinch-and-zoom and swipe gestures just like your smartphone.

Other Cars to Consider

2020 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class — Not a hatchback like the A7, but stylish all the same. A new generation debuted for 2019. A truly superb luxury machine, but the infotainment system isn’t quite as cutting-edge as the A7’s.

2020 BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe — The 8 Series is positioned above the full-size 7 Series in BMW‘s lineup and is thus more expensive than the A7, which is marketed as a more stylish take on the A6.

2020 Tesla Model S — More expensive, but there’s a ton of money to be saved in fuel bills. On top of that, it’s a joy to drive and look at.

Used Porsche Panamera — Similar in concept to the A7, also has a beautiful cabin, plus a choice of excellent engines to take full advantage of a brilliant chassis.

Autotrader’s Advice

Although we’re glad to see Audi offer a lower cost-of-entry for ownership of a brand-new A7 in the form of the new-for-2019 Premium trim, the Premium Plus still offers more of the features most buyers want. With that, we think it probably represents the best overall value for most buyers, although true value is tough to come by in this segment. Find an Audi A7 for sale

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